The last NHL official to be assigned #35 was referee Dean Warren, who last worked a game in 2008. From time to time, though, that number still shows up on the back of a referee’s jersey. Why?
Who Is #35?
That’s a funny question. No referee is #35, yet any referee can be #35. You could even have a #35 working every game on an NHL schedule. It’s not assigned to any individual, but on any given night, any individual might be wearing it.
Each NHL arena has a #35 referee’s jersey and a #85 linesman’s jersey on standby. These come in handy from time to time.
Perhaps an official’s jersey is in a checked bag that the airline misrouted — remember, these guys fly commercial airlines. Maybe an official’s regular jersey was damaged or blood-stained during the course of the game.
The team trainers can work with the officials to help replace or repair any of their equipment, but they might be stuck without a new jersey on site, ready to go. So if you see #35 or #85 on the ice, cut them some slack. They’ve probably had a rough day. They might not even be wearing their own skates.
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